When Pivot3 first engaged with a large utility based in the eastern United States, failing NVRs scattered across 130 regional sites were compromising security of the energy grid through constant equipment failures, compromised data, operational challenges and run-away expenses associated with inefficient truck rolls to sites experiencing failures. The traditional “hub and spoke” approach to security was also creating cyber security risks, and the utility was faced with difficulties in maintaining NERC compliance for both physical and cyber security with their dated, traditional solutions.
Together, the security and IT teams at the utility evaluated options from Dell EMC, Cisco, and Pivot3. After a thorough evaluation of all three competitors, they selected Pivot3 based on the resilience, efficiency and manageability at scale inherent in the patented architecture. In addition, the teams valued Pivot3’s ability to support mixed workloads, including physical and cyber security as well as datacenter applications.
As part of an ambitious plan to upgrade and modernize the entire security and IT infrastructure, the utility replaced the aging NVRs with Pivot3’s Critical Infrastructure solution to run video surveillance applications and store video data from 1,500 cameras. The modern Pivot3 hyperconverged infrastructure architecture provided a resilient, centralized solution up to the task of protecting the gas and electrical grid spread across the eastern U.S.
As the utility became comfortable and familiar with the Pivot3 solution, the team began to broaden the number and type of applications running on Pivot3. Today, Pivot3 serves as the infrastructure supporting over 100 applications, including LogRhythm, Milestone, Agent VI, Veeam, AMAG Access Control, CheckPoint, and TrendMicro Cyber Security, at multiple sites. The team also continues to roll out the modern Pivot3 infrastructure at tier one and tier two critical utility sites across their territory, with the long-term goal of deploying at 1,500 sites over the coming years.
Central to the continued expansion of Pivot3’s role has been the onsite presence of Pivot3 professional services engineers (PSEs). From the beginning, the leaders responsible for the infrastructure upgrade had an expansive vision of their overall IT and security evolution and knew that having technically proficient resources from key vendors onsite was critical to the re-invention of their infrastructure. The Pivot3 onsite engineers are part of a team of professionals quarterbacking the deployment of the entire infrastructure – video surveillance, access control, general IT, VMware, fabric security, etc. Pivot3 will continue to add onsite engineers at the utility as the deployment grows.
The utility’s holistic approach to consolidated security and datacenter applications on a Pivot3 hyperconverged infrastructure has obtained “Global Benchmark” status for physical and cyber security and is compliant with all 647 security metrics defined by the National Security Administration (NSA) for true security.
The team benefits from simplified management and reduced equipment and maintenance costs by running over 100 applications on a centralized infrastructure. In addition, the company reduces risk with the highly resilient solution that ensures video and data availability and uptime in their sensitive cyber-secure environment. The utility has achieved over a 12 percent return on investment on the capital expense associated with the Pivot3 solution.
A national consulting company and leading research university both did independent assessments of the utility infrastructure and referred to the solution as groundbreaking and “where all utilities need to be.”